As a leading member of the Cuban revolutionary government, Ernesto Che Guevara played a major role in the formation of the country's foreign policy during the first post-revolutionary years. One of the tasks he undertook, immediately after the Revolution's triumph, was to establish diplomatic, political and economic relations between Cuba and other countries, mainly of those of the socialist camp.
This aspect of Che Guevara's activity had significant political and economic benefits for Cuba, especially in a period of sharpening of U.S. aggression. It's not random that Che has been characterized as the “architect” of the Cuban-Soviet relations, which became a shield against the constant U.S. provocations. At the same time, Che set the foundations for the development of powerful ties between the Cuban Revolution and the People's Republic of China, Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic, as well as with countries participating in the Non-Aligned Movement (United Arab Republic, India, Yugoslavia, Indonesia, etc).
Until 1965, when he decided to disengage from his governmental duties in order to join the revolutionary war in Congo, Che was the major representative of Cuban foreign policy in international forums. He represented Cuba's revolutionary government in a series of meetings and conferences of regional and international organizations such as the 1961 OAS conference in Punta del Este, the 1964 UN General Assembly in New York, the 1965 Afro-Asian conference in Algiers. In his speeches Che denounced the plans and policies of North American imperialism and defended the rights of the people who were fighting against neo-colonialism and imperialist exploitation.
In his book “Che Guevara, Ambassador of the Revolution” Nikos Mottas attempts to shed light to the role of Che as a leader of Cuba's Foreign Policy during the first post-revolutionary years, outlining the Argentinian communist's internationalist activity in world politics. Towards this direction, the book utilizes a plethora of sources, including English, Spanish and Greek bibliography, important state documents (press releases, transcripts, declassified CIA and State Department documents, etc) which provide significant information about Che Guevara's activity during his trips abroad.
For the first time in Greek literature, the book presents aspects of Guevara's informal meetings, within the framework of the so-called “secret diplomacy”, with two U.S. officials, Senator Eugene McCarthy and President Kennedy's special advisor Richard Goodwin. Additionally, the book includes Che Guevara's full speech in the General Assembly of the United Nations (1964) and, for the first time in Greek language, the transcripts of two interviews, one in “Monthly Review” (1961) and “CBS” (1964).
Title: “Che Guevara, Ambassador of the Revolution”.
Author: Nikos Mottas
* Born in 1984, Nikos Mottas is a Political Scientist, founder and editor-in-chief of In Defense of Communism.